Disability guide available for Alpine resorts
MT Hotham has teamed up with Disabled WinterSport Australia (DWA) to create the 2015 Hotham Disability Visitors Guide – a first for Australian resorts.
Mt Hotham Resort Management Board CEO Jon Hutchins said traditionally people with disabilities heading to alpine resorts had been challenging, in part due to lack of access to centralised information about key services.
“We have hosted guests with disabilities for many years, and we knew that we could make it easier for those guests by providing better information about what we have to offer,” he said.
“This season, Mt Hotham has introduced additional parking arrangements for people with disabilities who require close proximity access to the snow, which are marked on the Disability Visitors Guide.
“We are also now able to provide improved wheelchair accessible village transport via a prupose-built vehicle.”
DWA CEO Eric Bickerton said the DWA is excited about the relationship and joint vision with Mt Hotham to enhance both the opportunity and visitor experience for people with a disability undertaking independent recreational snow sports activities.
“We are very pleased that Hotham has embraced the DWA resort services program, and I believe it’s an evolution- ary step for DWA,” he said.
“Through this program, together with a growing team of volunteers from the local community, we can help enable truly independent access for people with disabilities and their families and friends to this magnificent part of Victoria.”
The DWA is the National Sporting Ogranisation responsible for Adaptive Winter Sport in Australia and began operation in 1978 and has assisted thousands of people with disabilities to participate in winter sports at all levels.
Mt Hotham resort management worked closely with DWA resort services coordinator for Hotham Phil Knight to create the Visitors Disability Guide, which involved consultation to determine the location of services such as wheelchair accessible public shelters, cafes and conveniences.
The DWA has provided $20,000 worth of new adap- tive snow sports equipment including three new sit skis at Mt Hotham and in addition, Mt Hotham have arranged for a guest wheelchair to be located in the public shelter at the top of Heavenly Valley to enable guests with disabilities to more easily access facilities out on the snow.
The Disability Visitors Guide is available in printed form across the resort and from the Mt Hotham website www. mthotham.com.au.